Knick-Knacks and Doodads
Episode 2 of Somebody Somewhere begins with Sam woken up by her next door neighbour doing woodwork. As Sam heads outside, bleary-eyed and half asleep, she tells him to keep the noise down.
The thing is, it’s 12.30pm and Sam is still in her underwear. Her mum’s underwear, to be precise.
After this awkward run-in, we do learn more about her neighbour later on in the episode. His name is Drew, and they’ve been neighbours for over a year but Sam has always been wrapped up in her own world and never bothered to say hi until this morning.
There’s a weird yet charming chemistry between the pair, as Drew throws out a dark joke. He and Holly used to be good friends and reassures her that this dark humour would have been right up Holly’s street. I’m sure we’ll see more of these two in the coming episodes but for now, there’s not much more to this, as Sam takes her leave.
Meanwhile, Sam continues to get along with her new friends, Fred, Michael and Joel. The latter is her guardian angel of sorts, helping Sam through a rough patch at work and convincing her to embrace the singing she used to love so.
The thig is, Sam’s family is a constant black cloud in her life, especially Tricia who asks for help at the store. There’s still tensions between them, especially after their fight last episode and Sam isn’t in the mood for another argument.
Tricia talking to her friend about Sam is the catalyst for everything to blow up. Between their whispering and little jabs about Sam needing to go to the gym and Joel being her boyfriend, Sam kicks off.
Tricia points out that she’s 40 and that life is “happening all around her”, prompting Sam to leave and head over to Joel’s instead. Sam is depressed and since Holly’s death she doesn’t see much value in her life. Afrter a bit of a falling out between the pair, Sam eventually explains herself to Joel.
Sam likes singing but it breaks her heart to do so. In the past, Holly gave her some money so she could record some songs, knowing it would make Sam happy. Sam used to record these songs but refused to let Holly listen to them, something she clearly regrets now that her sister has passed.
Sam’s always had confidence issues and she admits to Joel that she doesn’t think she’s good enough, seeing no value in her current life.
After this touching chat, Joel convinces Sam to do Zumba with her, determined to let her blow off some steam. As the pair giggle and begin dancing, it looks like Sam is slowly starting to come around.
The Episode Review
I said it in the previous recap and I’ll say it again here. How on earth is this a comedy? The genre for this is likely to throw a lot of people out of whack because there’s some decent material in here but it’s in no way haha funny. There are barely any jokes and when the show tries to be funny, it comes off as awkward and contrived.
Having said that, the actual storyline is quite good and Sam is certainly relatable. Returning to her hometown after doing very little with her life, realizing she’s drifting and aimless, losing sight of her dreams, is indicative of a wider cultural issue and this show absolutely nails that feeling.
There are still wider plot issues, namely that of the cliched and archetypal family unit along with the jokes that don’t work, but this is turning into a decent little drama, if you can ignore the tagline of this being a comedy.